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Microsoft shuttering Games for Windows Live marketplace

With just over a week to go until Microsoft points are discontinued for good, Microsoft has highlighted that this will also lead to the end of buying games through its Games for Windows Live marketplace – as if that was something we all did with glee before.

GFWL, while a noble attempt to get in on the scene that Steam now dominates, was a bit of technology that just never clicked with most of its user base. It was an extra bit of login tech that just got in the way of decent gameplay. It would cause login errors relatively often, making many games unplayable years before we all got up in arms about the Xbox One’s restrictive DRM.

The announcement for the closure came on Microsoft’s official GFWL Facebook page, where a statement read: “As part of the upcoming Xbox 360 system update, Microsoft Points will be retired, and the Xbox.com PC marketplace will be closed as of August 22, 2013.

“We encourage you to spend your Microsoft Points balance prior to this change. Although you will not be able to purchase new games, you can continue to enjoy previously purchased content by downloading them through the Games for Windows LIVE client software as usual.”

I’m sure we’ve all seen this screen more times than we’d care to remember. 

Unfortunately, Microsoft isn’t closing the whole service, meaning games like Dark Souls will continue to be plagued by login issues, but at least no new games will be purchasable through the store – which will hopefully mean no new games support it. This idea is backed up by the fact that Age of Empires II HD was released on Steam without the digital gateway.

However, the software giant did elaborate in its site FAQ, that this does mean all GFWL games published by Microsoft will no longer be available for purchase as of 22nd August, so if there’s any particular ones you always wanted, you better get in there soon.

As for downloadable content for GFWL games, Microsoft recommends that we contact individual publishers to find out their plans for offering that content elsewhere.

KitGuru Says: I mention Dark Souls above because I picked it up recently in the Steam Summer Sale and have been enjoying it for a few hours over the past couple of weeks. However yesterday I accidentally kicked my ethernet cable out and off I go back to the main menu. It saved where I was fortunately, but what a pain in the balls.

[Cheers MCV]

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